- You’ve decided to eat green things, less red meat, and give up caffeine for herbal tea.
NO MORE SUGAR.
Until you end up huddled in a corner guzzling mochas, double-fisting French fries, and gnawing on a porterhouse like a wild animal.
There’s a better way.
Recently Magpie Bridge Apothecary Café opened quietly in downtown Rogers, and they are in your health corner. Offering food that nourishes the body and feeds the soul, it’s the first organic, plant-based, living foods restaurant in the area.
Wellness warrior David Wolfe always comes to my mind when contemplating healthier eating. “The best strategy we’ve got is just to add in the good stuff. Eventually,” he says, “it’s going to crowd out the bad stuff.”
And so part of a worthwhile wellness strategy is identifying places where dining out and choosing well is easy – where the menu supports and doesn’t sabotage your resolve. Magpie Bridge deserves the number one spot on any such list.
Ten years ago, Shannon, the proprietress, had loved ones in her life who were sick and in need of remedy beyond what Western medicine could offer. “When there is a dead-end to traditional treatments, they just send you home,” she told me. “I had to look for alternative therapies. I had to figure out what else could be done.”
Noticing the void in treatment where she felt nutrition should be, she filled it with raw cuisine and the power of superfoods while exploring ways in which changing diet could heal the body.
After years of applied learning and seeing the improvements in her own life – full remission from chronic fatigue and hormonal imbalances – and major improvements in how her loved ones felt, the idea to offer a place to share healing foods and educate her community on wellness was solidified.
Beyond focusing on living foods and juices, she also delved into adaptogenic herbalism and even Taoist internal alchemy to create blends and tonics that might bring balance to the many systems of the body.
Magpie offers raw versions of familiar classics, but also an extensive beverage menu full of “various ambrosials, coffee elixirs (with a PH of 7.2+), premium herbal potions, mystic mylks, phyto-nectars (fresh juice), celestial smoothies, small plates & salads, ferments, divine desserts, and raw chocolate concoctions.”
Beyond being your new beverage stop for warm Yogi Spice Golden Mylk, or a place for trying an incredible raw lasagna, Shannon also hopes to offer classes in the new year. Ideas being contemplated are lessons on fermenting, tonic herbs, introduction to raw foods, and screenings of educational food films in the café.
The dreamy little space is perfect for those community gatherings or even a peaceful remote workplace for one. Located in downtown Rogers on the main drag of Walnut Street, you might first notice Magpie is adorned with creative window displays. Featuring whimsical scenes filled with foraged components collected in the owner’s former Eureka Springs backyard forest; the windows definitely foreshadow the menu.
Intricate, creative, natural and mind-expanding.
Upon entering, you see plants dripping from every ledge. The exposed brick and pattern-painted hardwoods offer eye-catching invitation to nestle into any of the vintage seats in the room.
A book case brimming with interesting materials motivates you to fish your reading glasses out of your bag and stay a while.
The counter to ceiling apothecary holds jars upon jars of magical ingredients for whatever ails you among a personal collection of curiosities.
Try the Rose Glow. With classic adaptogenic beauty herbs of goji, schisandra, hydrolized pearl and rhodiola in a base of rose, hibiscus, and rose hip tea, it’s loaded with hemp seeds, tocotrienols (bio available vitamin E & B vitamins), coconut oil, strawberries, and is sweetened with dates and then topped with their homemade coconut whipped cream.
It’s said to feed your skin from the inside out. And it tastes like a strawberry shortcake malt with the slightest notes of citrus and just a wisp of rose.
This woman is gifted.
So, instead of giving your energy over to restriction in this New Year while seeking a healthier you, I suggest new experiences and simply adding in the good stuff. Because you don’t have to be a raw foodist to reap the benefits of and enjoy raw food. Nourishing the body can actually be quite an indulgent affair at Magpie Bridge.
105 W Walnut St Rogers, Arkansas
Hours: Thurs-Saturday 11am – 6pm; Sunday 11am – 3pm